Local Manufacturer Voices Support For Tariffs

May 20, 2019

Credit Becca Schimmel | Ohio Valley ReSource

With more than 20 years of experience trading with China, a Barren County businessman is voicing his support for increased import tariffs on China.

The Trump administration recently increased import tariffs on Chinese goods by 15 percent. China then responded with new tariffs on $60 billion worth of American imports.

Bud Layne is the CEO of Spantech in Glasgow, Kentucky, which builds custom conveyor belts for the food and packaging industry. He said he supports the Trump administration’s methods.

“Diplomacy in this case has no teeth. I’m in favor of it. It’s a bold move. No one else ever took the chance to do it,” he said.

Layne said he hopes to see better protections for intellectual property as a result of the trade war with China. He said he thinks it would help American and Chinese businesses thrive.

“Because then if you have intellectual property protection you can operate inside China, you can sell your product in China. Not worry about being ripped off by somebody, expand your markets,” he said.

Layne said it’s “nearly impossible” for his business to pass the cost of tariffs on to customers because they’ll lose business. He said his company has eaten the costs of the tariffs, but he still supports them.